Where isn’t High Fructose Corn Syrup?

Articles
April 15, 2010

Where isn’t High Fructose Corn Syrup?

Today, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) isn’t on ABC’s The View because Phil, is introducing a bunch of high fructose corn syrup free products! So what’s with HFCS anyway, and why are we hearing about it and seeing it everywhere and in everything?

Today, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) isn’t on ABC’s The View because Phil, is introducing a bunch of high fructose corn syrup free products! So what’s with HFCS anyway, and why are we hearing about it and seeing it everywhere and in everything?

HFCS is a sweetener used ubiquitously is processed foods and beverages, including crackers, salad dressing, soft drinks, juices, barbeque sauces, yogurt, bread, cookies, frozen entrees, canned soup etc- Check out some of the food labels in your pantry and your sure to find it. HFCS is made up of corn syrup that has undergone processing to change the glucose molecules into fructose- both of which are simple sugars, fructose is more than twice as sweet as glucose- and then is mixed with pure corn syrup (100 percent glucose), to produce the desired sweetness. HFCS increases shelf life of processed foods, is cheap- about half the price of cane sugar, and is easy to incorporate in food manufacturing. Sounds like the perfect ingredient…

Currently, life is not so sweet for HFCS as the ‘dangers’ and controversy associated with consumption have been headlined for months. HFCS has its critics and its supporters. Some critics say it is a toxic chemical that contributes to weight gain, by tricking satiety mechanisms in the brain and thus affecting appetite. Supporters dispute these claims and say HFCS is comparable to table sugar.

The most recent study on HFCS, conducted at Princeton University, found that rats with access to HFCS gained significantly more weight, had more abdominal fat and higher levels of triglycerides, that those with access to table sugar- even when their overall caloric intake was the same. Yes, the study was conducted on rats in a lab, but maybe just maybe HFCS might have a similar affect on people. New York Assemblywoman Barbara Clark, seems to think so (and then some). Just last week Clark introduced a bill proposing an outright ban on the use or sale of HFCS, in order to decrease incidence of related disease and to promote public health.

The American Medical Association and other similar organizations feel the need for further independent research on the subject. Nonetheless consumers have expressed concerns- a recent Supermarket Guru quick poll revealed that 81 percent of consumers feel HFCS is the most harmful to our health.

A handful of food companies are responding to the growing number of consumers concerned about the sweeteners used in the foods that they buy. Companies such as Kraft Foods, ConAgra, and PepsiCo are making moves to replace HFCS with cane sugar.

Tune into ABC’s The View, Friday April 16, 2010 at 11am EST- be sure to check your local listings- to see our very own Supermarket Guru, Phil Lempert discuss HFCS free products including; Hunts Ketchup, Sprite Green™, Dr Pepper with Imperial Sugar, Healthy Choice Tortellini Primavera Parmesan, Wheat Thins, Pillsbury Simply Cookies, Toufayan Bakery Whole Wheat Pita, Natural Vines Gourmet Soft Licorice and more- that you can find in your local supermarket!